NEW YORK (TheBlaze/AP) — With news about the Ebola outbreak in West Africa ramping up, U.S. health officials are monitoring the situation closely and said the risk of the deadly virus spreading to the United States is remote.
The Centers for Disease Control on Monday sent a health alert to U.S. doctors about the outbreak. There are no travel restrictions to the West Africa region hit by the disease, but last month the CDC issued a mid-level travel advisory for health workers.
In this photo taken on Sunday, July 27, 2014, Medical personnel inside a clinic taking care of Ebola patients in the Kenema District on the outskirts of Kenema, Sierra Leone. Liberia President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has closed some border crossings and ordered strict quarantines of communities affected by the Ebola outbreak. The announcement late Sunday came a day after Sirleaf formed a new taskforce charged with containing the disease, which has killed 129 people in the country and more than 670 across the region.(AP/ Youssouf Bah)
Two American aid workers in Liberia have tested positive for the virus and are being treated there. The family of one worker — a doctor — recently returned to the U.S. for a visit. The CDC said they are fine.
Still, a man who worked for the Liberian government as a consultant and died from the virus after traveling to Nigeria was set to visit the his daughters in Minnesota in August, according to Reuters. The man, identified as Patrick Sawyer, brought the issue of the disease possibly reaching the U.S. much closer to home.
In this photo taken on Monday, July 28, 2014, people hang out in a street under a banner which warns people to be cautious about Ebola, in Monrovia, Liberia. Two American aid workers in Liberia have tested positive for the virus and are being treated there. U.S. health officials said Monday that the risk of the deadly germ spreading to the United States is remote. (AP/Jonathan Paye-Layleh)
"It's a global problem because Patrick could've easily come home with Ebola," Decontee Sawyer, Patrick Sawyer's wife, told KSTP-TV. "Easy. Easy. It's close, it's at our front door. It knocked down my front door."
Watch WCCO-TV discuss the disease and it's potential for coming to the United States:
Health officials stressed people are not contagious until they show symptoms, and the doctor's family left Liberia days before he got sick.